Biodiversity the Human-Caused Change That Is the Essay

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Biodiversity

The human-caused change that is the greatest threat to biodiversity is anthropogenic climate change, which is caused by the burning of fossil fuels. This will create massive climate change, affecting the habitats where species live, causing significant issues that could affect their future survival, if they cannot adapt. This paper focuses on how these changes will affect biodiversity at the ecosystem level. The authors choose this focus because the ecosystem is a set of related entities -- individual species, for example -- but their interrelation is critical. If climate change affects a single species, it could disrupt the entire ecosystem even if the other species are not affected by the climate change. This example highlights the destructive capabilities of climate change.

One of the main points that the authors make is that a single species can and does affect an entire ecosystem. They discuss the removal of a single species, such as when the sea otter was hunted in Russia, leading to an explosion of sea urchins, which were the otters' main prey. Ecosystems exist in a state of delicate balance, so any individual species can have a significant impact on that balance.
The paper describes some outcomes as trophic cascades. The sea otter example is one. A single species, the sea otter, was removed from the ecosystem, but the cascade affected a far greater number of species. Sea urchins proliferated, and they would have crowded out competitor species, and whatever the urchins eat would have been depleted as well. This is an example of trophic cascade that was described in the paper.

Biodiversity also prevents invasion. Biodiversity is something that makes it more difficult for species to enter an ecosystem and succeed. When the ecosystem is in balance, it is less likely that an outside species can find a niche, when there are no available niches in a balanced ecosystem. An invasion species is generally thought to be more likely to flourish if there are available niches in an ecosystem. Alternations to biodiversity have had a negative impact on society. A good example can be found with the passenger pigeon. This bird outcompeted mice that carried the tick that transmitted Lyme disease. When humans killed off the passenger pigeon, those mice were able to flourish,….....

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